Oak Meadow Weddings

Oak Meadow Event CenterOak Meadow Weddings

I met Joy a few months back at a wedding event and learned that she was opening a new wedding venue.  When she showed me photos of the construction, I immediately knew I had to visit and see her place for myself.  Not only did I find her family absolutely delightful but the venue itself is a dream.  The spaces her and her family have constructed are thoughtfully laid out and designed with not only the bride but the groom in mind.  Once construction was complete, we headed back out to take photos of her space for their upcoming website.

A Bridal Suite

Oak Meadows bridal suite is like none I have ever seen.  Not only is it spacious but also comfortable with multiple couches, a full bathroom, and makeup station.  The simple yet elegant design will match any brides color palette.  Basically, this place is the BOMB!

A Man Cave

Jason affectionately dubbed the grooms room the man cave because while the bridal suite is feminine and delicate, the space downstairs for the guys is comfortable with space to watch the game or play a quick game of poker before the wedding day festivities.

The Great Room

The main room in Oak Meadow boasts a massive fireplace, vaulted ceilings, and plenty of space to dance and relax after a ceremony outside in the courtyard.  We loved the continuation of the neutral palette throughout the rest of the space . . but words really can’t describe how pretty it is . . take a look for yourself but hurry because wedding dates are already going fast.

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Sloss Furnace Engagement Session

Sloss Furnace

I have been wanting to visit Sloss Furnace ever since we moved to Birmingham last year but just haven’t had time.  So when one of my friends from Shutterfest invited me to do some creative work on an engagement session there, I was all about it.

Sloss Furnace originally opened in 1882 and was not only one of the largest iron manufacturers in the country, it was also one of the longest running blast furnaces in the world.  The production of pig iron in the city helped to shape the industrial revolution and the rapid growth of Birmingham, earning it the nickname, The Magic City.

Engagement Session

Katie and Thomas were a joy to work with for their engagement session and definitely were game to let us try some creative work that was rather outside what I normally shoot to include some purple gelled lights.  They shared how they met at Chick-fil-a or at least . . that is the official story.  As we walked through Sloss, Thomas who has a background in mechanics, was fascinated with the sheer size of the furnaces as well as the various moving parts in the space.  Katie, who has a love for trains was thrilled to have some images in front of the engines on site.  These two sweet people are getting married later this year in Huntsville and are so excited for all the future holds for them.

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The Paloma | Craft Cocktail Series

Paloma Cocktail with TequilaThe Paloma

As we near the end of summer, everyone is searching for a refreshing drink that can be sipped on a back porch as we soak up the last little bits of vacations, beach trips, and of course tacos.      So what drink is the perfect end of summer drink and is a favorite of Mexico?  Well, it isn’t a Margarita.  

Shocked?  I was to when I sat down to chat with Clair as she mixed what is truly the best Paloma (first really) I have ever had.  While Margarita’s are the drink of choice in Tex-Mex restaurants here in America, in Mexico the Paloma rains supreme.

While the history of the drink is obscure and hard to trace, one thing is for sure . . just like its name, the dove, it is smooth and light.  

Paloma Recipe

1 1/2 ounces blanco or reposado tequila

2 lime wedges

Grapefruit soda, such as Jarritos or Squirt

Pinch of salt

Pour tequila into a Collins glass full of ice. Fill glass with soda, squeeze lime in, and sprinkle salt on top, and use a straw to gently stir once or twice. Garnish with a wedge of grapefruit peel or a wedge of grapefruit.

While some recipes call for adding juice instead of soda, this one from Clair Mclafferty is so good.  Wanting a signature drink for your wedding day?  Contact Clair for your own custom version of the Paloma.

LET’S STAY CONNECTED

I hope you have enjoyed this post.  If you want to stay up to date, request access to our private Facebook page for special live content. In addition, to view all of our videos, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

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Otter Creek Open House

Otter Creek Open House

We recently had the pleasure of being invited to tour Otter Creek for their wedding vendor open house.  Jason and I immediately fell in love with the look of the Texas Hill Country right in the heart of Alabama.  Having spent some time living in San Antonio, it felt like we were right back there again with its elegant flagstone covered porch and infinity pool.

Farm to Table

Jason and I are big believers in farm to table whenever possible so we were thrilled to chat with Chef Carl and sample some of the BEST jambalaya we have ever had.  With locally sourced vegetables it was perfectly balanced and delicious.  A chat with the owners revealed that they were in the process of also opening a whiskey distillery in early 2019.

We also loved getting to catch up with our friends from Happy Catering as well as meeting some new wedding vendor friends like Kathy G and sampling treats from some of Birmingham’s finest vendors.  A huge thanks to Katie Calhan for putting on such a great event.

A Dream Venue

We loved touring this beautiful venue and learning more about all they have to offer, not only on the wedding day but beyond, especially for the outdoor minded couple.  Jason and I look forward to heading out there again soon.

Sponsors

Fine Paperwork

Happy Catering Company

Harp & Clover

Kathy G

RD Designs

Rush Wines

Savoie Catering

Bright Star

 

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Headshots for Local Author | Clair McLafferty

Paloma Craft CocktailHeadshots for Local Author

I originally met Clair while on a branding shoot for Soiree Event Gallery.  I was immediately impressed with her commitment to her craft.  Despite the fact that we weren’t actually drinking the cocktails she was creating that day, she still wanted them to look great and be an accurate representation of her work.

This past week we had the pleasure of working with her again not only on a future feature for the blog, all about craft cocktails but also on her headshots for her second book coming out in 2019.  Her first book The Classic & Craft Cocktail Recipe Book is a fantastic addition to any home bar and we are excited about her second book on romantic cocktails.

Creative and Logic

Clair is a self described nerd with degrees in English and Physics.  She is a balance of both the creative and logical.  It was an absolute joy to chat with her over lunch at her favorite Thai spot, a local gas station turned restaurant and foodie dream. . . but more on that on another day.

Clair mixed three drinks for us including the Paloma, Whiskey Sour, and Ward 8.  As she prepped, mixed, and poured she shared bits on knowledge not only about types of tequila but the history of the Ward 8 and why batching a Whiskey Sour for weddings, especially in the summer is not advisable.  I also learned that the Paloma is actually a more popular drink in Mecixo than the Margarita and I have to say after sampling one . . I immediately see why.  It was smooth and delicious and perfect for summer with its bright citrus flavor.  I may or may not be a little obsessed with these . . they are just that good.

When she isn’t bartending or writing, Clair gives back through the local Junior Board as well as the local chapter for the Bartenders Guild.  You can follow Clair at See Clair Write and for more amazing drinks, head over to The Essential where she currently bartends.

LET’S STAY CONNECTED

I hope you have enjoyed this post.  If you want to stay up to date, request access to our private Facebook page for special live content. In addition, to view all of our videos, subscribe to our YouTube channel. Clair McLafferty Headshots

Vendors

Venue: Hoover Randle House

Venue and Props: Prophouse

Mixologist and Author: Clair McLafferty

 

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